Top of the Class

Shearer - Women's Mile Heat

Sami Aziz photo

We understand that HepsNation members are more than just athletes.  Fortunately, their schools and other groups recognize that too.

Many student-athlete awards have been announced over the course of this past month by each of the Ivy League schools and various nationally and internationally-recognized institutions.  We’ve collected the names and honors for a lot of our student-athletes and wanted to share them below.  If we are missing something, let us know through the Contact link and we will update the list accordingly.

And now, without further delay, we have broken them down by school:

Brown: John Spooney, a five-time Outdoor Heps champion, was honored with the Fritz Pollard Trophy for being the most outstanding male athlete for the Bears.  Spooney, who is also a star running back for the Brown football team, opted to forgo his final track year to focus on the NFL Draft, where he has been invited to the Baltimore Ravens Rookie Camp this past May.  Also, Bruno scored 6 athletes on the Capital One Academic All-American District 1 listings, which covers the area between Maine and New York.  The athletes are Indoor Heps high jump champion Morayo Akande, thrower Holleigh Bergstrom, sprinter Ajani Brown, two-time Heps champion Heidi Caldwell, multi-eventer Peter Rhodes, and middle-distance runner Henry Tufnell.

Columbia: Seven-time Heps champion and 100m conference record holder Marvellous Iheukwemere was honored with Columbia’s Scholar Athlete Award for the Class of 2014.

Cornell: The Big Red had two athletes get recognized by their class upon graduation.  All-American and steeplechase conference record holder Rachel Sorna was honored with the Charles H. Moor Outstanding Senior Varsity Athlete Award as the top female athlete of the class.  Her teammate, All-Heps distance runner Emily Shearer (shown in image at 2014 Indoor Heps) with honored with the Ronald P. Lynch Senior Spirit Award, which recognizes student-athletes whose leadership on and off the field models the ideals of the athletics department.  Shearer, along with multi-eventer teammate Samantha Olyha, were previously earned with Marshall Scholarships for graduate studies at Oxford University back in December 2013.  Perhaps we will see them at future Oxford-Cambridge vs Ivy League meets? Meanwhile, distance runners David Melly and Devin McMahon joined Shearer on the Capital One Academic All-American District 1 list.  McMahon was honored last November with the Elite 89 Award for Women’s Cross Country, which honors the student athlete with the highest GPA participating in that NCAA Championship.

Dartmouth: Big Green distance runners swept the main student-athlete awards that Dartmouth hands out each year.  Seven-time NCAA champion Abbey D’Agostino was honored with many student athlete awards this past month, including the Kenneth Archibald Price Award for being the best athlete of the Class of 2014, the Class of 1976 Award for being the most outstanding female athlete, and inclusion on the Capital One Academic All-American District 1 Award listing.  D’Ags was also previously honored last December with the Honda Award for Women’s Cross Country, which honors the best in the sport and includes her as a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the prestigious Honda Cup. Previous Honda Cup winners from the Ivy League  Cross Country/Track and Field include Caroline Bierbaum (Columbia – 2006 Cross Country winner) and Brenda Taylor (Harvard – 2001 Track and Field winner).  All-American and indoor mile conference record holder Will Geoghegan was honored with the Alfred E. Watson Trophy for being the most outstanding male athlete, while his distancing running teammate Silas Talbot was honored with the Class of 1948 Scholar Athlete Award, which honors the most outstanding male student athlete in the junior class. In terms of a team recognition, the Dartmouth women finished 4th overall in the Terry Crawford Division 1 Program of the Year listings, which honors the best overall cross country/track and field programs in Division 1.  The Big Green women earned their spot by finishing 16th at NCAA XC, 7th at NCAA Indoors, and 22nd at NCAA Outdoors over the course of the 2013-14 athletic seasons.

Harvard: The Crimson’s throwers earned a pair of awards at their senior athletics banquet.  Weight throw conference record holder Adabelle Ekechukwu was honored with the Radcliffe Prize as the top female athlete for the Class of 2014, while her teammate Alysha Johnson was honored for her active community service role with the Francis J. Toland Community Service Award.  Ekechukwu was also included on the Capital One Academic All-American District 1 list.

Princeton: Princeton had three distance running honorees on the Capital One Academic All-American District 2 team, which covers the area between New Jersey through Kentucky: Alejandro Arroyo Yamin, Matt McDonald, and Emily de La Bruyere.  Meanwhile, two field-event related athletes were recognized with the Tigers’ William Winston Roper Trophy, which honors a Princeton male student athlete with high scholastic ranking and outstanding qualities of sportsmanship and general proficiency in athletics: All-American triple jumper Damon McLean and 25-time All-Heps honoree Tom Hopkins. Also, freshman sprinter Bryant Switzer was selected by Coach for College, an international community serving learning program between the USA and Vietnam, to volunteer in southern Vietnam as a teacher/coach for a year.

Additional links:

Capital One Academic All-American District 1 & 2 announcements (men | women)

NCAA Elite 89 Award

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